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Wildfire In Hawaii Puts Rainforest At Risk

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A wildfire on Hawaii’s Big Island has so far devastated 2000 acres of national park land and, if not put out, is on track to damage some of Hawaii’s most sensitive rainforest.

Firefighters have been brought in to try and put out the fire, but Gary Wuchner of the National Parks Service said, “It’s a very remote fire. We just can’t get to it.”

The biggest concern right now is an area of lowland rainforest that is a home to many species found only in Hawaii, such as the endangered Hawaiian bats, happy face spiders, carnivorous caterpillars and Hawaiian honeycreepers.

Wuchner added, “It’s a remnant forest and if we lose it, it’s gone forever.”

Currently the fire is about 3/4 of a mile from the rainforest. Firefighters have dumped water on it from above and are attempting to put it out from along the perimeter. The wildfire was caused by lava released from an eruption of the Kilauea volcano’s Kamoamoa fissure on March 5th.

We certainly hope the brave firefighters working to protect the rainforest are successful. While rainforests used to cover about 15% of the earth’s land, due to deforestation and other issues, only 6% is left. Each acre is precious.

Via Chicago Tribune

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